(Last Updated on : 24/08/2018)
The Vajrapani Pillar (i.e., a pillar surmounted by a figure of Vajrapani) apparently refers to Pillar 35 near the North Gateway of Sanchi Stupa 1
in Sanchi, Madhya Pradesh
. According to the Buddhists
, Vajrapani is the guide and protector of Gautama Buddha
. It symbolizes the power of Buddha. The dedication of the Vajrapani pillar is also mentioned in a 5th century inscription.
Of this massive pillar, only the standing lower portion of the circular shaft, the capital consisting of a bell-shaped lotus, a cable-necking and a square abacus carved with a balustrade in relief lying on the ground and the crowning Vajrapani have survived.
Vajrapani is cladded in a short dhoti
and adorned with a jewelled necklace of a serpent, heavy ear-rings, bracelets and an elaborate head-dress of Kirtimukha
. He is shown standing with his left hand holding the ends of his sash. The wrathful appearance of Vajrapani generates fear to the evils to release their stubbornness. The right hand, which is broken, apparently holds a Vajra, which denotes a thunderbolt. An interesting feature of this image is its small halo, pierced with twelve pairs of holes evenly distributed around the edge and presumably intended for receiving the tenons of a metal halo.
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